Tuesday, 31 December 2019

Five Parsecs 1.12 just in time for new years!

Last update of the decade!

Five Parsecs 1.12 took a bit longer than I had expected, but I think you'll find it was worth the trouble.

What is included?

Quite a lot actually.

New Enemy tables
These are huge. There are four new enemy tables, each with a ton of opponents to fight.
The selection even depends (a little) on the mission type too.

Many enemies now have special rules to distinguish them further and they have more variation in their weapon selection.

This should dramatically increase the variation and replay value of the game.

Unique Individuals
The enemy can be accompanied by special individuals similar to Five Leagues but with far more options available.

Morale changes
Morale now works more like it does in Five Leagues.

AI
New AI "modes" have been added (Beast, Defensive and Guardian).

Brawling
The timing of Brawling combat has been clarified and the rules explicitly cover fighting multiple opponents and fighting Stunned opponents.

Panic fire
An option has been added where you can empty the magazine for more shots NOW.

Battlefield finds
A new rewards system has been added, allowing you to scavenge a bit in addition to the Loot roll.

Weapons updates
The weapons table is longer now and some have been redone a bit. The Area and Terrifying traits are updated.
Note that not every weapon on the table can currently be acquired. This is intentional. Some are for scenarios or for later additions.

Invasions
Some enemies now have a risk of the world you are on being invaded, which means you'll have to get out of there NOW.

What should I print?
If you have printed the rules, I apologize since the updates affect almost everything. I'd reprint the morale, encounter and weapon tables and go from there.

As there are always some corrections, typos etc. please hold off on printing everything for a couple of days.

So what does the future hold then?
With this massive update, I intend to let the Five Parsecs core rules sit for a bit without changing more stuff.
While keeping the rules as a "living" project is great, obviously it also needs to establish some stability to be playable.

With that in mind, while we will no doubt have the inevitable "bug fix" update in a week or two, as typos and weird wording gets rooted out, core rules updates will be on hiatus for a little bit.
Instead, I'll focus on expansion material like more psionic stuff, alien characters etc.

I know people also want to see scenarios, so look forward to that.

Is this update for Patreon only?
Nope. It's for all of you. It was made possible through Patreon support so thank those guys and consider pitching in if you can.



Monday, 23 December 2019



Greetings gamers, Christmas is here and that also means the Wargame Vault Winter Offensive.

That's 25% off almost everything I've ever done.
What are you into?

* Solo fantasy adventure?

* WW2 skirmishing?

* Modern company level warfare?

* 6mm scifi?

Whether FiveCore, Laserstorm, Five Men at Kursk or Five Leagues From the Borderlands is your jam, we have tons of games for you, almost all 25% off.

Don't forget that most of our games have at least one expansion available, so it's a perfect time to fill out your collections.

Unsure of what to get? Kind of new to miniatures gaming?

My recommendations would be:

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/280863/Five-Leagues-from-the-Borderlands-2E?src=hottest_filtered&filters=0_0_0_0_44296&manufacturers_id=5701

Our fantasy solo rules, allowing you to explore the world and level up a war band as you face off against the forces of darkness. Silver seller on Wargame Vault, all 5's for review scores. Perfect for that RPG feel without requiring 5 hour sessions and a 5 person group.

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/274635/Hammer-of-Democracy?src=hottest_filtered&filters=0_0_0_0_44296&manufacturers_id=5701

Hammer of Democracy, WW2 tactical warfare focusing on combined arms. Complete with a points system, unit traits and extremely easy to learn game play that doesn't sacrifice any flavor.

Silver seller as well.

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/249657/Renegade-Scout--Bleeding-Edge-Retro-Gaming?src=hottest_filtered&filters=0_0_0_0_44296&manufacturers_id=5701

Finally Renegade Scout, our "Rogue Trader" love letter. Fantastic aliens, rules for everything you need on and off the battlefield and an expanding range of support products. Another solid "all 5 stars" silver seller, which received positive posts in the "Oldhammer" bloggosphere. Bring new game polish to old school gaming.

Whatever you decide to get, I hope you have a great holiday.

Monday, 16 December 2019

Assorted non-Patreon news and holiday news

A few updates on various things going on.

On the Squad Hammer front, with the kind help of a supporter, we'll have a snazzy looking version of the People's Edition available soon. No changes to the content, just using artwork that was available under an open license.
Additionally, there'll also be a stripped down version with no swank whatsoever, suitable for people who need to hack it apart to build their own games.

These will just be made available to anyone owning the original "People's Edition"
https://www.wargamevault.com/product/295773/Squad-Hammer-Core--Peoples-Edition

* * * * *

I've taken down the link for Five Klicks. WHAT?
Relax. I realized that trying to do all three "phases" of the game and keep it updated and consistent for each change is becoming a mess.
So I am taking down the sales link for right now, so over the holidays I can work on "Chapter 1" - which will be a fully stand-alone version focusing on the wasteland stuff.

Once that's done, everyone who bought the beta version gets a comp copy, and then we can start working on Chapter 2.

I'm sorry it's taken so long, I just miscalculated the best way of doing it and should have stuck to how I usually do things.

TLDR - If you bought the current version, you get Chapter 1 when it's done, no worries. You should still be able to download the beta copy if you like. If it gives you trouble, just email me and I'll sort you out.

* * * * *
Lastly, if I can get it done before Christmas, there'll be an updated version of an old rules set available.
It's one of the smaller things I did, but I've been tweaking it for a little bit and I think it fills a nice gap in the current line up.
Stay tuned!

* * * * *

If anyone wants to get me a bit of gaming goodness for Christmas, you can find my drivethru wishlist here
https://www.drivethrurpg.com/wishlist_public.php?public_id=163010&list_id=1021501& 

I would also be very grateful for Itunes gift card/credit.

Sunday, 15 December 2019

Patreon update and talk

So I wanted to do a quick update on what we've done through the Patreon so far:

Five Parsecs

Two rules updates. Currently working on a big overhaul to the Enemy tables which will be incredibly cool.

These items have been available to all players.

Five Leagues

One rules update adding 5 new items to the game. (Available to everyone)
Two chapters of the story campaign (chapter 2 just got posted yesterday).
The campaign is only available for Patrons at the moment but the plan is that every 5 chapters, I'll bundle it up for general sale.

I have 5 more items in the pipeline and we'll get Chapter 3 this month as well.

Renegade Scout

Two unit packs have been released. The plan is to do a third pack and a pack covering a general pick-up mission system.
These have been available for 5+ dollar Patrons and also sold separately.


So that's what we've achieved so far and what is in store for December.
Once we are through the holidays, I'd like to also start a Five Parsecs story campaign but I don't want to overcommit and get everybody mad :)


Friday, 6 December 2019

Hopes of Glory 2, updates and Five Leagues product listing


Greetings gamers.

I am excited to announce that Hopes of Glory has been updated to be compliant with the second edition Five Leagues rules.


What is Hopes of Glory? It is a gritty military campaign module, allowing your warband to take on mercenary work during the perpetual border skirmishes that the nobility tends to get up to.
New encounters, new skills to learn, a variety of interesting people to meet, whether you want tactical combat or pseudo-RPG experiences, Hopes of Glory has them. 

You can of course use your existing warband or create a brand new one as you prefer.

This updated edition offers full compatibility with second edition rules, additional enemy types and encounters, new skills and more.
I’ve also double-checked and made sure that as many items and skills from other second edition sources have been accounted for, so as many of your questions as possible are answered up front.

 * * * * *

Additionally, Roads Well Traveled, Tools of War and the core Five Leagues rules have all seen small updates to take Hopes of Glory into account, adding notes on how material will function within that campaign.
Go ahead and download your new files.
Five Leagues also features a chance to the post-battle Unusual Finds table (reducing the chances of finding stuff a little, just to avoid loot inflation).

 * * * * *
With that, I thought it’d be timely to remind you of the material available for the second edition rules, all available by going to the Nordic Weasel section :


We have 3 Micro Packs, each offering a bite-sized new “thing” to add to your games (a new companion, a town, a quest).

We have The Sunken Temple, the first scenario pack, offering you a mini adventure to play through and get some nice loot.

Tools of War offers new skills, items and options for your games.

Roads Well Travelled expands the Roadside Encounters aspect of the game, offering improved tables with more results (and more unique results too).


Monday, 2 December 2019

Five Leagues Patreon adventure and Five Parsecs 1.11

In case you don't check the Patreon page, the first chapter of the Five Leagues campaign has been uploaded.
This marks the start of a campaign you'll be able to play through as it unfolds.

The exciting thing is that the "stand alone" nature means I can also use it as a testbed for ideas over time, before they show up in expansions or other material.

The campaign chapter is available to anyone who is a Patron, so swing over and get your adventure started!

If you prefer to just purchase conventional material, the chapters will be compiled and published separately down the road, but I do not know what form that will take or when I want to do that. I am still feeling out all this Patreon business.

* * * *
Five Parsecs has been updated to 1.11.
The only change is that the Battle Conditions table now has 10 entries on it instead of 6.

Sunday, 24 November 2019

Squad Hammer Core Peoples Edition



Greetings gamers.

Today I am pleased to announce the release of Squad Hammer Core - Peoples Edition.
What is this?




Well, Squad Hammer is our beer&pretzels "anything goes" wargame rules for everything from ww2 to dinosaurs vs robots. Grab some miniatures and have a go.

It's aimed at being fast, easy and fun without sacrificing tactical finesse.

It's one of the best games we've done (in my somewhat humble opinion) so if you haven't gotten it yet, go ahead and get it.

What is the Core version of SH?

It's a slimmed down version, focusing on just getting you from reading to playing in as little time as possible. If you get the bug, you can pick up the original Squad Hammer for more options or the more refined WW2 set Hammer of Democracy.

Is this a new edition then? No, other than some tweaks with fonts and so on, this is the same game as the original Squad Hammer Core.

What I've added is something that is hopefully pretty cool:

A full license so you can freely create and distribute your own Squad Hammer content: Whether you want to make army lists, scenarios or variants..or publish your own "powered by Squad Hammer" game commercially, you'll be able to do so.

I talk a lot online about finding ways to empower new game designers and I hope this helps put my money where my mouth is.

So whether you are budding game designer or just in the mood for some super-fun fast-paced gaming, go ahead and grab the rules

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/295773/Squad-Hammer-Core--Peoples-Edition

Did I mention they are Pay What You Want?

I'd appreciate any donations to help fund our operations and new projects, so please throw some coin in the bucket but if you want to give them a good read first, then come back to make a payment, I support you 100%.


Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Renegade Scout Patreon pack available

This is an exciting piece of content for two reasons:

First, a lot of you have asked about "army list" type unit profiles for Renegade Scout. This pack provides the 3 first: Unity Colonial militia, Fringe gangers and Corporate Mercenaries.

Each has options to outfit them and predetermined points values, so they can be picked for battle "Codex Style".

I've also included a special Skill and equipment item for each of the three. For example a colonial militia grunt can be made an Old Vet (no penalties to fight while Pinned).

You also get three "scrap book scenarios": Basically scenario outlines with some suggested complications.
These are intended less as "play out of the box" and more "play after 15 minutes with a pen" if that makes sense.

Secondly, it's the first Renegade Scout update for the Patreon.
If you are a 5+ dollar supporter of the Patreon, you get it for free. Just check the Patreon posts on the site.

If you are not, you can still pick it up from the Wargame Vault.

Since this is the first few weeks of the Patreon and nobody has been charged (or gotten paid) yet, I'm not sure how much more I'll be able to do in this "pre-Patreon" phase, but there'll be a Five Leagues thing tomorrow and I hope to do at least one more Parsecs thing before the 1st.

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/295269/Renegade-Scout-Patreon-Pack-1?src=newest_recent

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Five Parsecs 1.10

Version 1.10 of Five Parsecs From Home is available, as a thank you to our friends on Patreon.

This features numerous improvements and updates.
Simply download your files from the Wargame Vault as usual.

WIth this update, I will be turning my attention towards new encounters, enemies and scenarios for a while. Stay tuned and don't forget to check us at Patreon.

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Something to try - Hammer of Democracy

A friend of mine mentioned running Hammer of Democracy at a convention and had a blast, but he also said he'd been using an intriguing house rule: Letting elite troops recover 3 HP instead of 2 when regrouping.

I guess I never thought of that, but that's a really easy "toggle" to set a unit apart: They aren't any stronger on the attack and still have to be pulled back to reform, but they'll "shake off" the effects of combat faster.
I really like that.

Give it a shot in your games.


Also don't forget to check out where Nordic Weasel started:

Five Men in Normandy is one of the easiest, quickest playing ways to get that "Band of Brothers" feeling that you will find on the market 


Best of all, it is Pay What You Want so why not check it out and see where we came from?


Sunday, 10 November 2019

Bright days ahead?

Updating games is a perpetual headache as a designer.
Not because it's bad: It helps build loyalty, it lets me continue to improve on a design rather than having it be less than the game it could be and it gives you something to look forward to.

While a good game can be played a thousand times, we all like having something new to tinker with.

The problem is that providing updates for existing games translates to very little in sales.
It's great for improving the loyalty of existing customers which does have a long-term effect in sales of future product, but spending a week working on something for a game people already own does not typically translate to more people buying that game.

Supplements do bolster sales, but there's also a limit to how much you can do that before it becomes sprawling.

So how do we solve that?
As you may know, I've experimented with just asking for donations for updates. That works but it's a bit messy and I don't know if people feel it's easy to figure out.

The solution instead is going to be a Patreon page:

https://www.patreon.com/nordicweasel

We will initially focus on three game lines:

* Five Parsecs From Home
* Five Leagues From the Borderlands
* Renegade Scout

with the aim of 2-4 additions for each of them every month.
This may be a scenario, new monster or new threat type for Five Leagues, a couple preconfigured units (with points values) or a scenario for Renegade Scout or a rules update or new module for Five Parsecs.

This allows me to continue working on making Five Parsecs everything it can possibly be, while giving Five Leagues and Renegade players new things to play with.
For Five Parsecs especially, there is a wealth of content I'd like to add, like alien PC's, new missions and much more and this may allow me to do so.

If this takes off, there's a lot of additional benefits it could produce:

* I will be able to apply updates to this bonus content.
I see a lot of RPG Patreons out there that release new material and then it just disappears into the void.
With a steady funding source, I'd be able to go back and provide updates to any new material we release.

* If we make it big, I'll be able to do additional focus on things in the back catalogue, like updated versions of Blast Pistol, a Laserstorm revision, porting game engines to new settings and who knows what.

* A goal I also have is something that could potentially be mega-cool, which is to run a "Living Campaign" for the three games in question.

Imagine this:
Every month, there'd be a campaign event that happens.
Let's say that in Renegade Scout, the K'Erin invade Soulless controlled space. So maybe we have a scenario for the month, along with a new unit or two.
Players could email me with any battles they played and tell me how it went and it might even influence future events.

Or in Five Leagues, a plague is ravaging the lands so now its harder to recruit and you may have to deal with plague zombies!

I think that could be incredibly awesome and it'd be something that really doesn't exist out there.
It would also mean that when a new player buys the game, there'd be this huge array of content to play through for them. How awesome would that be?


* * * * * *

Some questions and answers:

* What will the money go to?

Paying my bills. If I can make a hundred a month, then that's 100 less I need to make from releasing new material.
If I somehow get enough that it pays my rent, then I can focus on creating a ton of cool stuff for you guys, right?

* Will that be the only three games?

I want to start out simple and those three are the games that tend to sell the most.
If this becomes a thing, I'd like to add FiveCore and Starport Scum to the mix, but I don't want to try and overpromise, and then have to churn out a bunch of stuff that's sub-par, in order to collect a sandwich's worth of money monthly.

* How will the material be released?

Rules updates, particularly for 5P will typically just be part of the core rules.

Some new material will be made available for sale as well. The way this will work is that Patreons get a comp copy, if your pledge level is the sales price or more.

The living campaign material I am not sure about yet, I'll let you know when we get there.

* What does this mean for new developments?

Hopefully not too much. The goal is to be able to dedicate time on both, without having to scramble for money or rush anything.
Development of new games will not go through this process for now.

In theory, maybe in the future that's something we could look at, but I don't know if there's enough interest for that.

More specifically, this means that Five Klicks and Dreams of Dragons material is NOT covered by the Patreon since these are still formally in development. I'd rather keep that separate for now.

* So how much do I need to give you?

I set it up with tiers from a dollar and up. Give what you feel it is worth to see new content.
Obviously, the more I make, the more I can focus on this stuff.

As far as total amounts, 100 dollars monthly is where I feel the game updates are justified. At 300, Living Campaigns will be for sure, but we'll evaluate what to do if we get really close.
It may be doable with less.

I also need to feel out exactly how easy or difficult Patreon is to work with.

If I end up with a huge chunk of money, we might even be able to do things like putting out material as "pay what you want", creating a newsletter etc. All of that is just daydreaming right now though.
Let's get the basics off the ground first.

* * * * * *

We also have a Twitter account now! It's strictly for public announcements, please don't ask rules questions on there.
I don't expect to be using it for any debates or hot takes of any kind.
https://twitter.com/WeaselNordic

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Dreams of Dragons update

For this week, we're focusing on showcasing more of what you can do with Dreams of Dragons, by adding 5 Artifacts and 5 Orders to the game.

What are Artifacts? They are non-standard magical items that have abilities other than those provided by binding spells to an item with a SIGIL.

What are Orders? Groups and organizations that your characters can join to obtain social benefits, as well as gain valuable training.


So go ahead and download a fresh copy of the rules and get stuck in.

Monday, 4 November 2019

Weasel news. 5P 1.09, some questions etc.

Version 1.09 of Five Parsecs From Home is available.
https://www.wargamevault.com/product/226810/Five-Parsecs-From-Home

* Tech skill is now called Savvy.
* A couple of rolls are made now when you arrive on a new world. Some worlds require a "Freelancer license" to be obtained to do jobs there (you can of course try for a forgery). Also every world has some sort of benefit, such as superior medical care.
* When doing a Quest, the final mission will add +1 to enemy numbers.
* I've removed the Oddball Characters page, in preparation for a future update that will make it obsolete.

The biggest update is the new Trade Item table.
The old table could get a bit..well...old if you've played for a while. Also, some of the results were a bit outdated.
The new table has 10 more entries and the existing ones have been tweaked, updated and corrected.

This update was made possible through fan donations.

* * * * * *
Five Parsecs Gang Warfare has always been a bit of the odd one out, since much of the play style is ultimately duplicated by Five Parsecs From Home.
It is also the lowest selling of the batch, so I suspect I'm not the only one to think that.

As such, continuing to update it seems like a duplication of effort.
This means that going forward, unless it is correcting an error, "Gang Warfare" will not receive updates.

I'll scour the tables for any interesting gadgets that can be brought over to From Home instead.

On the upside, Gang Warfare is perfectly playable and fun, so I've changed the pricing to "Pay What You Want". So if you want to check it out, go have at it!
https://www.wargamevault.com/product/228512/Five-Parsecs--Gang-Warfare

* * * * * *
One kind donor asked if there will be a travelers guide / gazetteer for Erehwesle.
The answer is "probably yes". What we have in mind is expanding the setting material to about a page per country and then we'll work from there.

Stay tuned.

* * * * * *
Will there be a dedicated Erehwesle miniatures game?
Not impossible. Let me know what you might like that to look like.

A skirmish game where you could use your characters in larger miniatures battles would be pretty keen, wouldn't it?

* * * * * *
There will be a dedicated scifi *Hammer book, based on Hammer of Democracy, once Five Klicks is finished.
Title unknown. "Hovertankhammer" doesn't really roll off the tongue.

The aim is to offer a "ready to play" scifi game with a points system, big robot monsters, hover tanks etc. This is a bit of a change in position from what I had anticipated earlier, but I think it will make more sense.
I am not sure about page count. Stay tuned.

If you are a painter of scifi guys and would like to donate some photos, ping me.

Friday, 1 November 2019

DoD update

The first update for Dreams of Dragons is available.
This fixes a bunch of small typos, adds large cats to the bestiary and adds a page discussing party building to the character creation section.

I've also added a small list, indicating every Skill that receives a Base Chance in the character creation chapter, preventing flipping back and forth.

The change log is in the back of the book, though I didn't list every typo there.
If you have printed the rules out, I'd say there's no need to print everything again for now.



Sunday, 27 October 2019

Dreams of Dragons. It's a thing then.





A monumental amount of work has finally paid off.

The Nordic Weasel roleplaying game "Dreams of Dragons" is now available to the great, wide world.

Based on classic games such as Drakar och Demoner and Runequest, this is a 200 page power house filled with flexible character creation, a comprehensive old-school skill system, 37 creatures, a game setting and a bunch more.

Aimed specifically at 80's era gaming, with long-term campaigns in a high fantasy world, with semi-gritty combat and a ton of tools to help run the game, I think you'll be quite impressed.

As usual, we've aimed at providing a game that's absolutely packed with information, instead of a bunch of pointless fluff. As with all Nordic Weasel games, we're of course giving you a ton of options to tailor game play.

Combat ranges from a simple 4 page system to a full-blown tactical experience with detailed miniatures rules and a huge number of tactical options available.

* * * * *

Note that this is not the final game.

We are doing a lengthy, public beta test of the rules for 4-6 months.

It is absolutely a complete game but we have plans for even more content if the interest is there, as well as commissioning original artwork. Additionally as always, player feedback will be incorporated to fix problems, improve explanations and examples, add more play-aids and so forth.

If we end up doing any sort of future deluxe edition, all buyers of this version get a discount equal to what you paid.

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/293128/Dreams-of-Dragons

Monday, 21 October 2019

Assorted news

Five Klicks received an update this weekend, showing off the new Enemy table for the Outlands.

Each region in the game (3 intended) will likely look like this:

20 distinct encounters (though some are variations of each other) with variation rolls for weaponry and leadership.
Some have special rules that apply as well, while others are straight-up fights.

Give them a spin: Roll up a few squads and have them get in some scraps, let me know how they go.
As you are probably familiar with from Five Leagues and Five Parsecs, some are meant to be tougher, some less so.

* * * * *
If you want more Five Parsecs upgrades, the new Patron tables are in the rules. Make sure to download your files again as some errors were caught and I'd accidentally left the old tables in the book as well, like a doofus.

The next 5P update is a new, improved Loot and Enemy table, but we'll probably wait until the beginning of September before really pushing that.
As before, the goal is to fund it through donations, at 30 dollars per new table.

* * * * *
Work is still progressing on Dreams of Dragons. That's all I can say right now.
Ready to beta test soooooooooon.

* * * * *
I screwed up my back and got to spend a Sunday reading old GURPS books and Arthurian mythology, while unable to move much from the couch.
That's not really relevant to the business as a whole, but it sucked.

* * * * *
Lastly I am taking a break from social media. It's mostly a pool of pointless garbage to wade through and I just don't have the patience right now for dealing with it.

While I appreciate being called a totalitarian SJW who hates games, it's not really furthering anything productive you know?

If you need to reach me, you can do so my email and I'm not disappearing off Discord or anything.
I'm not even quitting social media forever, just taking a break from it.


Tuesday, 15 October 2019

A few questions that have come up

A couple questions that have ticked in over the past week or two.
If you've asked questions in the blog comments, I'll try to answer here, since try as I might, Blogger refuses to let me post any replies. No idea why, other than Google being evil I guess.


Will there be more "Gothic scifi" army lists for Squad Hammer?

I'd like to, but I am looking seriously at redoing the rules to be more in the vein of Hammer of Democracy.
That doesn't mean a new book or anything, just incorporating some of the better parts of that (such as the support points mechanic) as well as adding more options.

So doing more army lists before doing that would probably not be time well spent.
I do want to make "gothic scifi human army" and "space creepy crawlies" lists for sure.

Five Klicks updates?

After several takes on how to do the encounter tables with modifiers or different numbers or types of dice, I am taking the path to have a separate terrain and encounter table for each of the three regions.

That both seems cooler, will be easier to work with, will allow future expansions to be slotted in if we want to do like an abandoned science facility or something to play in and I think will be more fun from the players perspective too.

The Outlands enemies are almost done, then I'll finish up the city sequence.

Five Parsecs updates?

The update to the Patron mechanic is funded, so that will go up soon.

If you guys want an updated Enemy table and Loot table, make a Paypal donation at nordicweaselgames@icloud.com
When donations reach 30 dollars, the Enemy table gets updated and 60 gets the Loot table.

Patreon?

Talk of a patreon has come up and I'm pondering the idea.
If I did it, it would be keyed specifically to 5 Parsecs/Leagues/Klicks/whatever to create content or updates monthly.

Stay tuned.

Dreams of Dragons?

Soon. Soon.

Wednesday, 9 October 2019

Updates and news.

The next Micro Pack is available for Five Leagues.
In pack 3, you get to track down an ogre that has been bothered the villagers. Might even make a friend out of it (or get eaten!)

This pack is 3 pages (4 with the cover) and 1 whole dollar.
As a test, this time it is NOT Pay What You Want, so I can see if people prefer a bit more meat or if they prefer shorter but potentially free.

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/291132/Five-Leagues-Micro-Pack-3 

If you didn't get them yet, make sure to get our other recent Five Leagues goodies:

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/289630/Five-Leagues-Micro-Pack-2 

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/288974/Five-Leagues-MicroPack-1

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/288973/Five-Leagues-Scenario-1-The-Sunken-Temple

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/286930/Roads-well-traveled-A-Five-Leagues-expansion

* * * * *

Five Klicks is proceeding as planned, if a bit slowly.
If you make sure you have the most up to date version, you'll see the updated weapon lists as well as terrain and set up mechanics for the Outlands.

This week, I am hoping to have the new Enemy tables for that region as well.

* * * * *

Five Parsecs players should make sure they have downloaded the most up to date versions of From Home and Salvage Crew, to see all the goodies that were added.

I have a rash of plans I want to do to update the game and in particular, over time, fold the different Parsecs editions back into a single game that allows a variety of mission types.
Stay tuned for information on that.



* * * * *
FIVE PARSECS TABLE UPGRADE

We're going to do another upgrade round and see how it goes.

The goal is to upgrade the tables of the game, namely:

1: Redo the Patron table to add more unique effects such as patrons that are more or less easily pleased, higher risk/reward patrons, patrons that operate on multiple worlds etc.

Basically make the Patron aspect of the game more interesting and a bigger component.

2: Upgrade the Enemy table.

This will include both adding a few new enemies, but the big draw will be building in some more variation to results (enemies with variation in support weapons etc.) and adding some special rules and conditions to some enemies (similar to Five Leagues).

3: Upgrade the Loot table.

Combine the Salvage and From Home loot tables into one table and add 10 or so new items to it.

If possible, I’d like to also add an option to obtain prototype or rare weapons on a sub-table.


So that's the pitch.
Like last time, we'll do this through a voluntary funding mechanism. 
Basically, if you want to get these new things send me money and I make game-stuff happen.

Easy enough no ? Last time, people overwhelmingly preferred to just use Paypal so as a test, we're not bothering with any crowd funding thing. 

So steer your money cannon to nordicweaselgames@icloud.com and if I get 100 dollars from the fans, you get the new goodies. 
(please note do NOT send to my old gmail address, if you had sent donations to it before that are unclaimed, please cancel those and just forward them here instead)

If I get a bit more, I'll throw in some extra stuff for you lot, such as more enemies or items to find.

If I don't get the amount, I'll see where we ended up and do a proportional amount: 40 dollars gets you the new Patron table, 70 gets you the Enemies as well.

Easy peasy? Yeah, I hope so.

* * * * *

Monday, 30 September 2019

Updates and news

Five Parsecs:

The update project was generously funded, mostly through private Paypal donations.

As such, I uploaded the new versions of From Home and Salvage Crew this weekend and hope to have Bug Hunt and Gang Warfare updated this week.
Hope you enjoy the new stuff and have a blast.

* * * * *
Five Klicks:

Today's update gives the terrain and conditions tables for Outlands battles.
These are fights taking place in relatively "normal" circumstances, near the settlement.

The rules also receive the Suspicious Activities mechanic, offering markers on the table to go investigate.
They may offer a small reward, nothing at all or a nasty critter.
However, if the Enemy gets to them first, they may get reinforcements, forcing you to deal with them or risk facing a larger enemy force.

* * * * *
Other stuff:

I am working as hard as I can to get Dreams of Dragons to the beta-stage.
Hopefully this week. I really want to get this out there, so you guys can tear it apart.

I've received a few questions about solo play and I must admit at least initially, it's not really a concern, though of course with something like Mythic, you can make any RPG a solo game.

Reception of Five Leagues stuff have been a bit mixed. People who I've talked to have appreciated more stuff, but it seems people would prefer several items bundled into one expansion pack, compared to a load of tiny things.
That's fair. We'll continue experimenting but I'll have something for you in October.

Thursday, 26 September 2019

Five Parsecs update

A few people have requested updates to the Five Parsecs series of games, especially in light of Five Leagues 2nd edition.

As I am already in the mindset, working on Five Klicks, that’s certainly a possibility but it raises a question:

Doing rules updates don’t earn any income. It doesn’t seem to correspond to more sales or even better reviews. 
Maybe gamers are just used to broken rules, I don’t know. But with my wife’s student loans coming out of deferment soon, working for free is something I can’t really justify.

So here’s what we’re going to do:
I am going to tell you what updates I am ready to make and then you are going to pay me to make them.

Easy right?

First the rules:

For all four Five Parsecs titles (From Home, Gang, Salvage and Bug) I will:

  • Update the character creation sections to generally make starting characters a bit more capable. This includes changing half point stat bonuses to full points, increasing credit and XP amounts a little etc.

  • Each game will have at least one new enemy added to its encounter tables.

  • Each game will have two D6 tables added for encounters, allowing the chance of unexpected battle conditions or items on the battle field.

  • Each game will have a “Five Leagues” style Story Point mechanic added.

  • Each game will have a “Five Leagues” style “Seize the Initiative” roll added.

  • The table of contents will be updated with clickable links to take you to the respective rules sections.

How will you pay for it? 

You people, the fans, will pay me a collective 125 dollars to carry out these updates for all four game titles. 
That’s 25 dollars for the basic work plus 25 per game title.

I have created a Gofundme page to collect the money.
Since I know some people prefer not dealing with additional websites, you can also simply send the money directly through PayPal at nordicweaselgames@icloud.com 

When that total amount has come in, everyone gets the updates.

If there’s not enough money, I’ll put the updates into Five Parsecs From Home and the rest will follow at an unspecified future date.
If there’s excess money, it will help fund the development of future games. If we go way over, I’ll throw in some extra goodies at a rate of one “goodie” per 25 or 50 dollars.

These may be extra encounters, new loot items, more ideas ported over from 5L or other things I can think of, but will be relatively small scale.

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Game updates and new material

In case you don't get email from the Vault, you may have missed a few news items.

New releases:

* We've released two "Micro-Packs" for Five Leagues.
Each of these is a small Pay What You Want item that can be easily slotted into a campaign.

The goal is the sort of thing you can read over on break at work and be inspired to come home and game.

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/288974/Five-Leagues-MicroPack-1?src=newest

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/289630/Five-Leagues-Micro-Pack-2?src=newest

* Five Leagues has also received a new scenario: The Sunken Temple.
Usable in any campaign, this is the sort of thing that will give you a nice afternoon of gaming or a couple of evenings.
Track down a flooded temple and find some nice loot at the end.

This is more of a traditional adventure, compared to the typical encounter tables, so I am curious how people will react to it.

Five-Leagues-Scenario-1-The-Sunken-Temple

* * * * *
Game updates:

* Five Parsecs Salvage Crew has received a couple of updates, easing up the rather punishing game economy a little.
As usual, change log on the final page. All you need to do is download your game again.

* Five Klicks has an update as well, adding the (proper) character creation system.
Some of the bonuses rolled may change with further development of course, especially as new things are added.

Give it a spin and let me know how it looks.

* * * * *
Behind the scenes:

* Dreams of Dragons is clocking in around 180 pages currently.
The beta for this will have more content than a lot of finished games you bought this year.

The beta will be sans art, except for a world map so you can tell where you're going.


Saturday, 14 September 2019

Five Klicks updates

I meant to get the character creation stuff up already, but I realized what I had was kind of dull, so took it apart to rewrite.

Here's what it will likely look like:

Every squad member will have an Origin roll similar to Five Parsecs, determining where they came from in the setting.
The second roll will determine their Training. This may involve actual military training or, more likely, being part of some group surviving in the wilderness. They may have been an ash merchant, hung with a nomad gang etc.

These will be similar to the tables in Five Parsecs, offering various stats and benefits.

The third table will be an Event table, quite a bit longer than the other two.
Depending on "experience" a starting character may roll 1-3 times here, while brand new "scrubs" won't roll at all.
The results here will give you things that happened to the character. They were in a big battle, found something cool, almost got eaten by a monster.
Some things will add benefits, some may add a penalty, some will just be for flavor.

Magic in Dreams of Dragons

So a brief look at the magic system in Dreams of Dragons, since I hear the kids are all about wizards.


First and foremost, the core of the magic system should seem quite familiar to players of Drakar och Demoner or the original Magic world:

Each spell is a skill, which is trained like any other.
Casting spells requires a skill check and depletes magic points.

When you cast a spell, you select the Effect Level (EL) you want, which is used to determine damage, size of target, healing etc.
You can also burn EL's to increase the range and duration.

This allows us to have a single "Fire" spell instead of f.x. having a multitude of interchangeable attack spells that just vary slightly in damage, range etc.


The higher the EL, the harder the skill check of course and the more magic points are expended.
This allows "utility" spell casting to be used quite a lot during a scenario, while big, "screw this guy in particular" spells will be harder and more limited.


In terms of setting logic, spells are typically taught from big, ancient Librams: Dusty tomes containing all the permutations and logic interpretations of how a given spell operates.
A single Libram may hold only 4-6 spells as each takes hundreds of pages.

When your character is created, they select one Libram they were educated in at the academy and you have those spells.

"Learning" a spell is the process of your character understanding it and fitting it into their own world view. Your own spell book then is basically like taking notes in class.

Characters can learn from other spell books as well, but its a slower process because first you have to figure out and understand that wizards magical paradigm.


Of course not all wizards are book-worms. Village witches, tribal shaman etc. don't learn this way.
Instead, they use what the educated wizards somewhat derisively call Cantrips:

These are the same spells but are basically pre-configured: A Cantrip is learned at a specific EL and is always used in the same fashion without any choice over how the levels are spent.
Think of it as a single practical application of a scientific formula.

This allows the spell to be taught in a matter of weeks (instead of months) and to people without the patience (or inclination) towards memorizing and analyzing a 200 page treatise on the nature of the ethereal cosmos.


So there you have it. Magic. Woot.

Questions?

Monday, 2 September 2019

Dreams of Dragons combat



Alright, so a bit of Dreams of Dragons talk. Combat will have 2-3 "levels" really. At its most basic, its fairly similar to BRP combat:

Roll to hit, roll to parry, take damage, subtract armor, hope you have HP left.

We're actually leaving hit locations out of the beta, but there'll be something else very clever to kind of take that place and solve the gameplay problem that hit locations solve. 
That's it though. 
You can explain that in like 2 minutes and be on your way. 

Players who want more will have a ton of options available:
If you want things like characters getting battered from hits on their armor to throwing your sword to weapon damage types to fairly in-depth rules for combat with miniatures etc. that's all going to be there, but separated out into optional sections so you can "build" things up. 
Practically, I expect that people will either run JUST the base system, base system plus one or two extra options or the full enchilada. 

Faithful to both Drakar and mid 80s gaming, there's of course going to be big ass weapon and armor lists with pointy-bits-on-sticks.
Who wants a game where a winged spear is not clearly distinct from a partisan? :-)
There's story reasons for having all that junk too: It helps make encounters more interesting, you can have specific groups or characters favor particular weapons etc.

The goal here is that you can just burn through combat if you understand how to make a skill check, but if you want to get crunchy, there'll be ample stuff to work with.


Tuesday, 27 August 2019

Dreams of Dragons

Just a mock up for the beta, the final version will have original artwork.


So I’ve alluded to an RPG project we are working on and I think it’s safe now to share at least a little bit more about it.

The project is titled Dreams of Dragons.

As a few of you guessed, the project is based off the venerable Swedish game Drakar och Demoner
BRP / Runequest derivative with some unique qualities of its own and its legs somewhat firmly planted in a kitchen sink fantasy with a sort of common-sense Nordic sensibility. 
That does not mean it will be a strict clone, but rather we are using it as a starting point to achieve our goals.

* * *

Thematically, this is a reach back to a gaming style that has become a bit over-looked, but which we believe still has adherents.
Roleplaying tends to be dominated now by either narrative-driven story-game experiences, survival-focused dungeon crawlers or meticulously balanced tactical systems.

We’re not setting out to create “gonzo” or “weird fantasy”.
There’ll be no endless dungeon levels or anime heroes. 
We’re not trying to be offend your grandma or to make you have a deep realization about interpersonal relations.

Instead we hope it will be a game where Tolkien’s Strider and Edding’s Sparhawk may feel at home, adventuring to the tune of a Blind Guardian song, while scenes from a Michael Whelan or Angus McBride painting play out.

Those are somewhat lofty aspirations and we hope we can achieve them with your help.

* * *

What is the game system going to look like then?

Mechanically, it’s a skill-driven system using a D20 roll-under system. 
There are no character classes. Instead once you have created your character (a fairly quick process) you are free to pursue any activities you are interested in.
Skills improve slowly as you use them, reflecting your characters actions. 
If you want to master something, you must train hard or seek out an instructor.

Combat is gritty without being excessively lethal.
A simple action system with attacks, parries and hit points that don’t escalate out of control.

Magic is skill driven with the ability to cast spells at increasing levels of power, granting players a lot of flexibility without endless lists of “cure tiny wounds”, “cure small wounds”, “cure somewhat bigger wounds” etc.

Miniatures will be catered for with simple but robust rules for their use, whether you prefer playing on a grid or wargaming style with a measuring tape.

Complexity wise, we’re aiming for something with more meat to it than something like OpenQuest or most OSR games, but without being as involved as Runequest or GURPS.
Most players should be able to pick up how to play in a single session.

More interesting features include a “Hero” system, allowing players to gain powerful abilities if they prove themselves, Orders and organizations to join from the mundane to the mystical and the chance to become a messenger of the gods with all that entails. 
Backing that up will be rules for overland travel, mass warfare so you can lead armies to save the kingdom, creating your own magical items and of course a huge array of creatures to role play as.

The rules should be sufficiently compatible with other BRP games that you can easily use creatures and monsters from games like OpenQuest or Runequest with very little difficulty. 

* * *

The aim is a one-book game, with the possibility of further books or later expansion down the road.
This book will include multiple magic systems and the sprawling campaign setting of Erehwesle to play in, with everything from degenerate lizard men, war torn battlefields and sea knights to crusading minotaurs and animal worshipping imperialists. 
There’s centaurs and cat people and… ducks? Yeah. Definitely ducks.

The setting will be supported with character creation options for the different people and critters of the world, allowing you to make characters that feel right at home immediately.

We will be doing a beta test for the game.
This will function the same way as past Nordic Weasel beta tests have worked:

The beta version will a fully playable game, though without a lot of the fancier stuff (mass combat f.x.) and some with some sections such as the bestiary heavily reduced.
When you buy the final game, you will then get a discount equal to the cost of the beta copy.
This way when you put money down, there’s a game to get stuck into right away instead of kickstarting for stuff that may never be finished.

As with any other Nordic Weasel title, updates, corrections and improvements will be added even after the final game is released.
We’ve all bought a game in PDF and been irritated that there’s obvious mistakes from years ago.

* * *

When will all this go down?
Hard to say because this has become a huge project, but hopefully very soon.
The version on my hard drive is fully playable right now, but needs more work to be presentable. 

Monday, 26 August 2019

New Five Leagues expansion available


https://www.wargamevault.com/product/286930/Roads-well-traveled-A-Five-Leagues-expansion 



This expansion for Five Leagues From the Borderlands dramatically expands the Roadside Encounters mechanic in the core rules.

The worlds of fantasy tales are always filled with interesting, memorable and occasionally dangerous travelers and our campaign games should be no different.

The existing tables have been expanded to include new results, allowing for more variety and more things the person might want from you.

Some existing results have been tweaked to be more interesting as well.

Players have remarked positively on the ability to make Friends with travelers, but they haven’t been that easy to get an advantage from.

We’ve updated that system to make it a bit more helpful to the player.

There are also more opportunities to have roadside encounters now.

Most excitingly this pack adds 30 unique encounters ranging from a treasure hunter joining you for a bit to the local drunkard wanting someone to hang out with.

These new encounters can grant you rewards, new problems to deal with or a welcome respite fro the merciless world.

Some are simply events that happen, while others give you decisions to make.

The new rules, updated tables and unique encounters are all integrated into the new encounter table, allowing you to take full advantage of this pack.

Players who have their rules printed in a binder can simply replace the “Roadside Encounter check” pages in the rulebook with the pages from this supplement.

The pack is written for the 2nd edition rules, though it should be usable with 1st edition with very little adjustment.

Wednesday, 21 August 2019

Assorted news, updates, thoughts etc.

As the summer is winding down, I thought it was time to take stock of things.


* * *
First, if you don't receive email from the Wargame Vault, we have a "going back to school" sale going on.
As the kids go back to school and busy themselves with homework (in theory) or hanging out with their friends (more likely) , there's usually a bit more hobby time.
Perfect time to start a new project!

All of these codes are for a game for 9.99 and they will probably run through to the end of the month.

5 Leagues https://www.wargamevault.com/browse.php?discount=9bef03e42f 

* * *
Five Leagues 2nd edition has been doing quite well and feedback has been pretty much all positive.
It's also been hanging out in the top sellers spot on Wargame Vault for quite a while.

Thank you everybody for your support.

We will be reviewing more of the original supplements for update/conversion. The challenge is in determining how much to add / change vs just checking for compatibility and stamping it "okay for 2nd edition".

* * *
Updates to Five Klicks have been coming pretty fast.
I am going to not touch anything this week, before uploading a new version, just so people have some time to settle in and get more games in. 

* * *
I've gotten some guesses as to the future RPG project and what it might be. 
If you haven't keyed in yet, it involves a certain aquatic bird. Maybe. (Definitely) 

* * *
Occasionally I get email from a fan of this or that game and they are surprised at a different game I've done is so different.
F.x. some players were surprised at the open-ended nature and "vagueness" of the Squad Hammer titles, others missed solo options in Renegade Scout or Laserstorm etc.

That's inevitable, since we have so many titles but I feel it's important to note that the "Weasel way" of gaming is not to repeat the same idea over and over again.
Sometimes a given idea or concept has legs and can be re-used (Five Parsecs, FiveCore and Hammer are all "families of games") but ultimately, I don't believe in a single system to rule them all. 

* * *
With that being said, I sometimes get a question if there's something brand new on the way: A completely new system and game engine etc.
The answer right this second is no, I am taking some time to consolidate my position, build on our successes and go back and update assorted lines. 
That includes new versions of some very old titles, as well as more support material in general.

I do have ideas for something brand new (as always) that I think could be super cool, but it'll be a little bit before I want to delve into that, as it'd be a massive endeavor.

* * * 
What have I personally been playing lately?

Unfortunately not a lot of war gaming outside of testing things, though I've been dabbling with Columbia Games "Battlelust". 
We're several months into a very fun Harnmaster RPG campaign and just started a small side game with two friends of myself and my wife.


Friday, 16 August 2019

Project Dread Onion Dog

This project is far enough along that I feel I can talk about it now.


The title of the blog post is just a code-word for now, because I was feeling silly.
There is an actual name, but I'm not sharing that until we're a touch closer.


So what is the project?

Well, it's an RPG project.
It'll be a retro-clone of sorts of a venerable Nordic role playing game.

What all is it going to include?
Well, ideas change but right now, the goal is:

* A skill-driven RPG derived from BRP roots.
No classes or levels: Make a character and develop them as you see fit.
Improve as you adventure and train, based on the actions in-game.

* Quick character creation that still produces a well rounded character, with a mixture of random rolls and player choices.

* Combat that is fast, yet has enough detail to be interesting.

* A complete game with mass combat rules, creatures, magic item creation etc.

* A logical, consistent game system that isn't driven by tons  of special cases.

* A flexible, open-ended magic system.

* Gritty game play with room for heroics.

* "Cosmopolitan" game play where characters can be from a number of interesting species and places.

* A built-in game world with a mixture of recognizable fantasy tropes and creative ideas.  A loving homage to "kitchen sink" fantasy worlds but with a more cohesive feel.

* Also a game world where we hope players will read about it and immediately want to make a character from one of those places.

* * * * *

I realize that the above probably sounds fairly vague.

So let me try to explain it this way:

The trends of roleplaying right now tend towards one of three things in my view:

*The OSR, with a big emphasis on random encounters, survival-dungeon crawling and player-over-character approach.

*Indie/story games, with their emphasis on precise marriage of theme and mechanics and telling of specific story experiences.

*"Big Traditional" games like 5E and Pathfinder (2 now) with a focus on chains of tactical combat experiences and precise encounters.

What we're working on is not any of those.

Instead it is (hopefully):

*A style of game where a reasonable degree of realism and simulation is viewed as a positive.

*A game where characters are expected to have a place in the world and not simply be blank slates.

* Encouraging a play style where it is understood that fantasy adventure is about many things: Dialogue, sword fighting, exploration and excitement.

* Exists in a game world that facilitates adventure but also feels like it was alive before the players came along.

* A game that evokes a sense of fairytale adventure:
If the stories of Conan and Barsoom and Lankhmar are the building blocks of the OSR, this is the stories of Middle Earth, Sparhawk and Lyonesse.

* * * * *

What we're hoping to do is around 200 pages, including a complete game setting, world map, character sheet and an introductory adventure.

We may try to do a POD version as well, that remains to be seen.

It's VERY unlikely there'll be a kickstarter or anything like that.
It's possible we'll have a beta test version.
If so, it'll be done NWG style where you buy the beta for a reduced cost and then get a discount on the final game.

* * * * *

Answering a few obvious questions:

Q: Why would this be better than [insert BRP game here]?

A: I think this will sit nicely in a spot where there's more "meat" than something like OpenQuest but be a bit smother than most versions of Runequest.

Q: Can you tell us exactly what game you are retro-cloning?

A: If you haven't figured it out, I'm not telling.

Q: How much original content will there be?

A: The game world is 100% our own creation. Mechanically we're trying to lean on the source material but the goal isn't to be a precise copy (which would be pointless)

Q: There's already 10 billion roleplaying games on the market, why don't you just publish the 47th new take on B2 instead?

A: The reason to do anything creative is because you want to do it.

Q: Is this a solo project?

A: No, it's a collaboration with someone.

Wednesday, 14 August 2019

Updates and news

Several updates to Five Klicks have come out, so make sure you have the most up to date version downloaded.
If you are wondering about what changed, check the changelog on the final page.
At the moment, since page numbers often change from version to version, it's not really practical to list what pages things were changed on, I apologize.

If you didn't pick up the new rules yet, make sure you do so at :
https://www.wargamevault.com/product/284182/Five-Klicks-from-the-Zone?src=hottest 

Renegade Scout players can rejoice in the Fighting Vehicles expansion, offering 13 pre-built vehicles (complete with profiles, weapon load-outs, variations and points costs compatible with the Elite Pack values), as well as a few new gadgets and background information.

It is available here:
https://www.wargamevault.com/product/285647/Renegade-Scout-Fighting-Vehicles-of-Unified-Space?src=newest_recent


Sunday, 28 July 2019

Post apocalyptic skirmish campaigns?



Greetings gamers, I hope your weekend went well.

There's 2 requests that are made all the time when it comes to our "Five [units of measurement]" series of solo games.
One will be discussed later but the other is post apocalyptic gaming

Well, wait no more because Five Klicks from the Zone is here.

Take a squad of hard-nosed survivors, delve into the forbidden zones and reclaim civilization from the mutants, the warlords and whatever lurks in the rubble.

As you play, your squad will gain experience, find cool loot and face off against dreadful enemies, all perfectly adapted for a fun solo gaming experience (or bring a friend and split the squad!)

* * * * *

This is not the final version of the rules.

We are doing a public development where new versions will be made available on a very regular basis.

Right this moment, the rules contain the core of tactical game play with a fully playable but VERY simple campaign section. Over the coming weeks, the content will be expanded with all the lovely campaign action and D100 tables you expect.

Buying the game now gives you the following benefits:

* You get to see the game as its being developed and can provide feedback and suggestions on each part as its added.

* You get the game for 10 dollars rather than the final price of 15.

* In addition, I am throwing in a copy of Five Parsecs: Salvage Crew as a freebie. Cool huh?


So go grab it. 10 dollars gets you into the beta and you can start setting up a squad and testing the tactical environment tonight!

Then as each day goes by, more and more content will appear until you have the final game in your hands.

https://www.wargamevault.com/product/284182/Five-Klicks-from-the-Zone